tasty morsels of goodness on open platforms, developer relations and motherhood 2.0

Monday, October 30, 2006

buy my stuff & filmloop 2.0 tool

Take part in a friendly wager between work colleagues. Below, I am displaying the listings I have up for sale on eBay - buy my stuff!

To help move things along, I've enlisted the help of a photocasting tool from our developer community, FilmLoop. They've recently come out with their 2.0 download, which is way slick. And it even now comes with an eBay version, Loop Gallery eBay, that's safe to post on your listings and shows cools stuff like # of bids, time left in auction, etc.

You can use it to photocast pictures on your eBay listings page, MySpace, Facebook, your blog - you get the picture. (ahem.)

Sunday, October 15, 2006

my red state namesake

we all have an alter ego out there. mine happens to be male, has an astonishing amount of hair, and plays in a Joe Cocker tribute band in Ohio.

then again, maybe i'm The Bizarro Delyn. it's all in how you view the other side of the same delyn coin, my friends.

fostering innovation at Motorola

"Risk-taking does not just mean placing big strategic bets with long-term pay-offs ... Success turns just as much on the willingness of people throughout a company to take all the little risks that add up to good execution ... That sort of atmosphere is hard to achieve unless the boss takes it seriously - and unless everyone in the company knows that the rules really have changed."
innovation is impossible without risk. this recent article from The Economist about Motorola's CEO, Ed Zander, highlights the leadership that is required when trying to encourage risk-taking at big, established companies, esp. one that has stumbled and experienced a dent in their confidence. it involves a simple message heard straight from the top: when you take risks, you're going to make mistakes. mistakes are OK. not taking risks is the biggest mistake you can make in today's global economy.

Zander took over in January 2004, with an established market leader (Nokia) that had surpassed it back in 1998. inspiring corporate confidence and a willingness to take smart risks means making sure your people don't learn the wrong lesson from a big bet that failed, in this case Motorola's Iridium satellite project - that also happened, perhaps not coincidentally, in 1998.

final pearl of wisdom (you need a subscription to view Economist articles online, hence so many quotes):
"(Zander's) new corporate culture has also filtered through to the company's hiring, where more emphasis is now placed on people skills, rather than just technical ability. After all, when innovation involves complex interactions between many internal teams and outside partners - as it does at Motorola - the ability to communicate is prized."

Thursday, October 12, 2006

apex developer network @ Dreamforce

I had a great time at Salesforce.com's Dreamforce event the past few days. Alan, Adam and I learned more about the relaunched Apex API, heard from Maynard and Don Albert from Skype in the keynotes and hung with the ADN folks in their Developer Lounge. (I missed the swingin' party at the DNA Lounge afterwards due to being under the weather, but Adam and Alan reported back: good times).

One of the highlights was getting to see eBay API developer Infopia take home the Appy award for "Breakthrough Application of the Year" in the Tuesday afternoon ceremony. Read more about their "business mashup" utilizing Salesforce.com and eBay APIs.

Ralf from Infopia shared a little bit about the "Appy experience", including their photo with Marc Benioff and their trophy below: "As a matter of fact, this award is so coveted that the trophy, a dancing hula doll mounted on a trophy base, was stolen out of our booth at the end of the show today. We have an APB out to find her. :-)"

Congratulations, Infopia! Hope your trophy manages to hula her way back to Utah.

- Delyn

Infopia Dreamforce Appy 006

Sunday, October 08, 2006

at what point is it news?

I, like many others, get much of my industry news by RSS feed these days, but here are a few interesting stories that stand out because I read them in print or heard them on the radio first = suddenly elevated rumors into credible news. Conventional wisdom has been that traditional media often looks to sources like the Drudge Report and TechCrunch to sniff out tomorrow's news headlines, but recently the line between the two (online/blogs and traditional media/news journalism) seems increasingly blurred.

  • Foley Story Wasn't Reported, Until It Was, National Public Radio. How ABC News broke the Foley Page Scandal story online, which caught the attention of former teenage pages who then proceeded to send in enough incriminating IM/email evidence to move the story over to prime time.
  • Terry Semel's long pause, The Economist. The impact of sloppy betas and what is considered too long to expect from idea to execution in an entrepreneurial culture. The tone of this piece is quite "bloggy" for this publication. Not sure if that's a good thing.
  • Google poised to net YouTube, The Sunday Times UK. Granted that the details are still sketchy, but it will be interesting to see who will end up being the moron.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

developer community event: Yahoo! Hack Day

I stopped by Yahoo! Hack Day last Friday (pre-Beck concert), and I wanted to congratulate Chad, Jeremy, Dan and the others involved from Y!DN on a fantastic developer event. Three things impressed me particularly:

1) You can consider your developer event a success with good tech press, blog, flickr & youtube coverage. But getting your local TV news anchor to exclaim how much she wants a Hack Day t-shirt is in the camp of impressive crossover coverage.

2) I particularly enjoyed reading this post by Ben (formerly of BBC/now of Citizen Agency) who we met briefly at Hack Day on the specific elements of what he thought worked better at this developer event than others he has attended. Phil took things a couple of steps further by contrasting the cultures and sensibilities of a more commercially-minded API developer crowd (even the term VAR is so 1996) with a hacker crowd. Bottom line: I think it's a good thing to recognize that not all application development is done by twenty and thirty-something, Silicon Valley-dwelling hipsters.

3) And speaking of recognizing and celebrating more parts of the developer spectrum, you gotta give props to a developer event where the best overall hack was a flickr hack from three women armed with the tagline "blog from your purse". That rules!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

(valley)wag the dog: digg revision3 party

eBay's Delyn Simons with FriendeBay's Delyn Simons with Friend Hosted on Zooomr

Common, but easily cleared up misconceptions after last week's F-U-N fun Digg Revision3 party at Mighty in SF last week:

Q: Was that you in ValleyWag last week?

A: Yes.

Q: Are you a red-head?

A: No.

Q: Have you ever taken Red Bull & Vodka in a glass together?

A: Um, no. A smart Sapphire & tonic in high-ball will do nicely, preferably not in plastic, (open-bar exception notwithstanding).

Q: Why all the red references do you think?

A: Perhaps the red shirt? Plus, the club's red lighting had everyone looking a little surreal.

Q: Who is your "with Friend" there?

A: Andrea Wildt of Salesforce.com

Q: Anyone missing from the photo?

A: Alan and Rob were strangely absent from this photo.

Q: Digg v3 or Digg Revision3?

A: v3. People paid attention to the demo, and I liked seeing the stamen visualizations. Plus, I liked Kevin and Jay's hair better.

Q: Anything else you'd like to clear up?

A: Digg knows how to throw a launch party. Good times. How do I get on the media list next time? And can you make Diggnation t-shirts in women's sizes, please? Yes, the black ones. If not for me, do it for Lala to wear on Tikibar TV - "uh, you're on my shirt"

Monday, October 02, 2006

hard words to hear

sometimes, working effectively with your developer community means listening to words that are hard to hear.

i'm not talking about flaming or mindless retribution - i'm talking about a well-written, insightful critique on something you put countless hours of energy, heart and soul into. sometimes, the input is a bit more raw, but they are voices of honesty and clarity and first-hand experience. words that make you sit back in your chair and think "yes, you're right. this should be easier."

speaking of words that are hard to hear, best of luck to Greg and Leah on their new adventures in LA.